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4 ways to protect your eyes this Holi!

Holi, the colourful festival of our country, essentially bids goodbye to winter and heralds the arrival of spring.

Holi matches the riot of colors of spring in full bloom and traditionally was played by making colors from the flowers blooming at that time and even herbs etc. The fragrant natural colours also had therapeutic value and were beneficial for our skin and health.

But over the years, natural colours have been replaced by synthetic ones to the extent that most Holi colours sold in the market are oxidized metals or industrial dyes (like those for dyeing our clothing). All these are toxic and can result in anything from skin allergies to cancer, eye irritation to blindness... and much more. When washed, they enter our water and soil, and cause even more pollution.

Regrettably, most of the Holi colours sold these days contain many harmful chemicals. In fact most are dyes meant for industrial uses like dyeing textiles and are not meant to be applied on humans. These colours include heavy metals, acids, alkalis and powdered glass. The black paste has lead oxide, green contains copper sulphate, red is mercury sulphite etc. All these are toxic and can result in anything from skin allergies to cancer, eye irritation to blindness… and much more.

Why your eyes are at risk during Holi: The eyes can get injured easily during Holi because of their placement in the body and also because of the use of harmful chemicals in colours these days.

Some safety Holi tips:

- Use clear glasses or if in the sun, sunglasses to protect your eyes from coloured water and powder.

- Wear a hat or cap to protect your hair and eyes.

- Apply a thick layer of cold cream on your face especially around the eyes so that the colour doesn't stick and it can be easily 
washed... While washing off the colour, keep your eyes tightly closed and use warm water.

- If you are travelling, keep the car windows tightly shut. If travelling by bus, do not use the window seat. It makes sense to avoid travelling on the day of playing colours.

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